First published back in December of 2009, Ghostwriter Publications released the chapbook ‘Limited Edition’ containing three previously-released short stories by the prolific pulp horror author Guy N Smith.
The Piper Calls The Tune – 8 Pages
After surviving the fall of the Nazi’s by escaping to Switzerland, Ketler – one of the Fuhrer’s despicable scientists – has been working on creating a super-race of giant rat’s, bred from the sperm of Ketler himself. His co-scientist, Steiner had already succumbed to the giant rats; having been devoured once his work had been fulfilled. The rats, which stand on just two feet at a metre in height, are becoming restless. Ketler needs to unleash them on the city of Berlin soon. However, following the disappearance of some local peasants and strange reports detailing sightings of gigantic rats with monkey-like features, Sergeant John Mayo – The Man In The Black Fedora – is once again called in to action under the name of ‘Operation Werewolf’. Ketler’s nesting ground for the breeding of his deplorable super-race is about to be uncovered. One man has been sent to wipe out this hate-fuelled threat that has waited over half a century. Luckily that man is Sergeant John Mayo...
The short previously appeared in the short story anthology entitled ‘Mystery & Horror Shorts: 1st Collection’ (1999). Adding further to the ‘Black Fedora’ series - ‘The Black Fedora’ (1991), ‘The Knighton Vampires’ (1993) and the subsequent short story ‘The Grim Reaper’ 2001, the short once again taps into the work of ‘Operation Werewolf’ and the man behind it all – Sergeant John Mayo. This wildly over-the-top tale sports a multitude of pulpy excesses; bringing together a veritable litany of monstrous ideas into a truly inspired and downright enjoyable piece of fiction. Smith takes on a no-holds-barred approach with the potentially risqué subject matter of the continuation of the Nazi mind-set, throwing in a scene of an infant baby mutilated at the hands of the giant rats for good measure. With an ending that is as utterly far-fetched as the premise itself, Smith goes the whole hog with Mayo’s response to this new threat, incorporating a truly imaginative solution to overcome this race of giant rats. With a head’s up to his classic pulp horror masterpiece ‘The Sucking Pit’ (1975), Smith plays a tune that stands in good stead for appealing to all the fans of his work. This really is pure pulpy goodness from start to finish.
Until Death – 4 Pages
After finding out about his wife’s affair with another man, our narrator decides enough is well and truly enough. Actually hearing the words from the horse’s mouth (so to speak) his wife Janet had informed him that she only really married him for his money. So upon finding an old phial of strychnine in the outhouse, our narrator decides to solve all his woes by murdering his wife. However, it proves to be far from easy to rid the world for good of this raven-haired ex-beauty queen. Perhaps tampering with the car’s breaks will do it? If all else fails, then surely a shotgun to her pretty little head will end it all?...
The short previously appeared in the short story anthology entitled ‘Horror Shorts: 2nd Collection’ (2001). Beaming with black-comedy from the outset, this utterly comical tale shows a humorous side to the prolific pulp horror author, that has previously only been glimpsed emerging every now and again within his work. However, with ‘Until Death’ Smith embraces the angle of humour for all it’s worth, delivering a tale that plants a smirk on the face of every reader from start to finish. Written in the first-person-perspective, the short is able to relay a story from the frustrated viewpoint of our unnamed narrator, allowing for a truly amusing angle for the reader to appreciate the story from. Short and sweet, after a few attempts at taking his wife's life, the tale concludes on a brilliantly bizarre note, promising one final laugh to end it all with.
Pocklington’s Walk – 6 Pages
Based upon Guy’s own family legend, Charles Weale (Guy’s great-grandfather) moved his family back home to Leicester into a large Georgian house that had a surprisingly low rent. Upon moving to the property, the Weale family and their servants soon start to hear strange banging noises resonating from the cellar, along with other such mysterious and creepy behaviour. When Aunt Trudy returns from an evening with friends, to her horror she is confronted by the perpetrator of these mysterious occurrences. The house has a dark and evil secret that cannot be ignored, not even by those who don't believe!
The short previously appeared in the short story anthology entitled ‘Horror Shorts: 2nd Collection’ (2001). This final short is a creepy tale that slowly builds on the eerie suspense until the final understanding is made apparent. Because of its personal nature to the author, a certain haunting quality can be seen within the tale; reaching out to the reader with an air of spine-tingling truth about it. Delightfully spooky throughout, the short spins a tale that throws the author back to the days of E F Benson, Algernon Blackwood, Ambrose Bierce and the like.
The chapbook runs for a total of 20 pages.
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